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Review Essays of Academic, Professional & Technical Books in the Humanities & Sciences


Ophthalmic Disease in Veterinary Medicine by Charles L. Martin (Manson Publishing, Blackwell Professional Publishers) This comprehensive, superbly illustrated textbook is aimed at the veterinarian in practice or training interested in all types of ophthalmic diseases and disorders. Species coverage is mainly dog and cat with additional material on the horse and the cow.

Following an outline of the basic elements of ophthalmic science relevant to study and practice, the author provides a detailed description and discussion of each condition including etiology, clinical signs, diagnosis, prognosis and therapy, plus a chapter on problem-oriented ophthalmology.

Dr Martin has filled an important gap in veterinary ophthalmic literature and has created a valuable resource, focusing throughout on the clinical needs of the practitioner and the student.

This text is not meant as an encyclopedic answer to all veterinary ophthalmology questions, but rather to cover the vast majority of questions which are likely to arise in veterinary practice. The intent is not to make specialists out of all who read this text, but to help the generalists to make better informed decisions regarding their patients. That information may allow the practitioner to handle the problem with more confidence, refer the patient with a better workup in a more timely manner, or may simply allow more accurate client education regarding an ocular condition or treatment.

While a small number of ophthalmologists feel they should see all patients with eye problems, the reality is that the general practitioner can competently manage a variety of ocular conditions if well informed. The difficult part for all of us is to realize when we need additional help. Having worked in a referral institution my entire career, I have come to realize the best referrals come from the best informed general practitioners.

Dogma regarding clinical conditions becomes easily established, often without good scientific validation. At times the busy practitioner may find more information in this book than he/she wanted to know about a subject. I realize that we are all looking for one or two sentence answers to all of our questions, but it is also importantto point out deficiencies in our knowledge or point out conflicting views of which the reader may not be aware. It is frightening to realize how little `hard data' are available in clinical veterinary medicine. We are reminded of this by our clients who daily ask specific questions which we cannot answer. The latest journal article or the most recent continuing education program does not automatically take precedence over previous data and clinical views.

Animal Disease Surveillance and Survey Systems: Methods and Applications edited by Mowafak Dauod Salman (Iowa State Press) addresses the growing need in veterinary epidemiology and regulatory medicine. This valuable text offers readers practical information on monitoring, surveillance, control and eradication of animal disease. Regulations based on animal diseases, demands for accountability in use of research funds, and demands for economic justification of animal health regulatory and diagnostic activities call for a comprehensive text and M.D. Salman, Professor of Veterinary Epidemiology of Colorado State University and Director of Animal Population Health Institute, College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, answers the call.

Salman presents techniques for conducting an animal disease surveillance program and developing an animal health monitoring system. The text offers a "recipe book" for these systems by explaining modern techniques, while emphasizing the fundamen­tals and principles behind these methods. Contents include:

  • Application of surveillance and monitoring systems in disease control programs.
  • Planning survey, surveillance, and monitoring systems.
  • Data collection and sources for survey, surveillance, and monitoring systems.
  • Statistical analysis of survey, surveillance, and monitoring systems.
  • Use of simulation models in surveillance and monitoring systems.
  • Quality assessment of animal disease surveillance and survey systems.

The book targets epidemiologists and other animal health authorities who work in national, regional, and international programs. Animal Disease Surveillance and Survey Systems also can be used as a text for a professional and postgraduate training curriculum. The emphasis on fundamentals ensures that this book will not go out of date.


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